Canadian Manufacturing

Lap of luxury: Volvo trades front passenger seat for executive accesories

Volvo's Lounge Console concept features a work table, a tablet computer and an illuminated vanity mirror



Removing the passenger seat created an open space that dramatically changes the dynamics of the interior. PHOTO: Volvo Car Corp.

Removing the passenger seat created an open space that dramatically changes the dynamics of the interior. PHOTO: Volvo Car Corp.

GOTHENBURG, Sweden—Volvo Cars has unveiled a new concept that takes in-car luxury to a new level at the Shanghai Motor Show.

Dubbed the Lounge Console, the concept offers chauffeur-driven business people the ultimate executive accessory: It replaces the front passenger seat so the well-heeled passenger can stretch out and put their feet up while conducting business en-route to their destination.

The Lounge Console features a large work table which opens to reveal an illuminated vanity mirror, including a storage tray for jewelry and personal accessories or make-up. The table rotates 90 degrees and simultaneously powers forward to display a 17-inch media screen for a full in-car theater experience.

Below the cushioned leg rest is something no self-respecting executive can do without: storage for shoes.

The removal of the front passenger seat allows for full forward vision creating a uniquely spacious environment.

“We analyzed the needs and perspective of the chauffeur-driven executive, designing the car around him or her in the spirit of our brand’s aim,” said Thomas Ingenlath, senior vice-president of design at Volvo Car Group. “A key element in our thinking was how to make the available interior space work for the occupants in an optimal and luxurious fashion. Removing the passenger seat enabled us to create an open space that dramatically changes the dynamics of the interior and led to a firework of ideas and new possibilities.”

Volvo conducted ethnographic research to discover the “unexpressed and unmet needs of people with a high-profile lifestyle.”

“People who are on the move and have a hectic lifestyle going from event to event or meeting to meeting need some space, some luxury time, and the opportunity to relax and refresh themselves for the next engagement,” said Ingenlath “This is ultimately what the Lounge Console is designed to facilitate.”

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